We describe an optical microscope system whose focal setting can be changed quickly without moving the objective lens or specimen. Using this system, diffraction limited images can be acquired from a wide range of focal settings without introducing optical aberrations that degrade image quality. We combine this system with a real time Nipkow disc based confocal microscope so as to permit the acquisition of extended depth of field images directly in a single frame of the CCD camera. We also demonstrate a simple modification that enables extended depth of field images to be acquired from different angles of perspective, where the angle can be changed over a continuous range by the user in real-time.
© 2008 Optical Society of AmericaFull Article | PDF Article